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Pluralism defined --
Philosophy - a theory that there is more than one basic substance or principle and a theory that reality consists of two or more independent elements. Contrast pluralism with monism and dualism.

Source: pluralism. Unabridged (v 1.1). Random House, Inc. (accessed: February 18, 2007).

Importance of pluralism to strategy --
Pluralism is at the heart of the dynamic evolution of markets, and as such, becomes a required attribute for the business organization seeking to develop and sustain a competitive advantage. Micro-diversity, at the root of causality of self-organizing systems, is pluralism. See self-organization.

Disciplined pluralism - John Kay --
""Disciplined pluralism is the process of perpetual experiment in market economies, in which most experiments fail and are terminated, but the few that succeed are quickly imitated. Disciplined pluralism diffuses authority and exploits local knowledge."" (Kay, 2004, pp 18)

The important distinction between pluralism and monism or monolithic control is between centralized and decentralized decision making.

""The combination of moral rigor and free inquiry is the basis of disciplined pluralism - the defining characteristic of a market economy."" (Kay, 2004, pp 56).

Recognizing the superiority of free markets' ability to create leads to the understanding, which is deeply counterintuitive, that disorganization is superior to organization. The genius of markets is that they are not dependent on the genius of an individual. (Kay, 2004, pp 19)